It is approaching the three year mark since Apple introduced the iPad and since that time tablet computers have become extremely popular. Well over half of tablet computer owners get their news from the tablet everyday as opposed to print media or television.
This trend has publishers scrambling to design media that is friendly to readers where traditional web content has focused on videos, interactive graphs, and podcasts. Part of that design will be aesthetic but there is more to it than that.
Imagine tablet news as a source that is continually upgraded right in front of your eyes. All related products and events can appear on your screen.
Mario Garcia has spent over forty years designing newspaper layouts and scrutinizing ways to make things more appealing and now he is faced with the new challenge of tablet computers.
"The tablet is a very unique medium, and you simply do not dump content from the newspaper into it," says Garcia.
He continues,"Print is designed for the brain and the eye - the tablet is designed for the brain, eye and finger."
For Garcia it more than just aesthetic design, its about the psychology of the user and creating an experience on the tablet that other mediums don't provide.
He explains, "People expect more of a relaxing experience there, but every time we go for a total lean-back experience, we discover that people also want to lean forward, for news updates before bed, or whenever they want to get that last update of the day".
When asked about who he thinks is getting it right with tablet computer editions of news he says The Orange County (Calif.) Register has got his vote. In magazines he claims that Readers Digest has really caught his attention.
It will be interesting to see how tablets continue to change the way we read, dicepher information, and subscribe to periodicals. It's something I haven't given much thought to until now.